New England Soccer Today

Predictions: 2015 #NERevs

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/capturedimages.biz

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/capturedimages.biz

The day you’ve impatiently waited for since your club trudged off the pitch at the StubHub Center some 90 days ago is finally here, Revolution supporters: First Kick 2015.

With the new season on tap, we asked a few of our writers to give some quick predictions about how 2015 will transpire for the Revolution.

 

1. Where will the Revolution finish in the Eastern Conference?

Justin Churchill: The Eastern Conference looks ripe for the picking, New England should have no problem winning it. Losing Sporting Kansas City and Houston Dynamo to the Western Conference opens up plenty of opportunities.

Sean Donahue: First. There are still some question marks, especially defense, but in a weakened Eastern Conference, the Revolution are capable of taking first. D.C. and Columbus could be tough competition.

Brian O’Connell: First. The Revolution finished second last season, and they actually got better during the offseason with the acquisition of Juan Agudelo. Plus, they’ll have a full season of Jermaine Jones at their disposal. I have a hard time seeing any team in the east being better than the Revolution this season.

Jose Pereira: I think the Revs will finish 5th in the Eastern Conference. The East is more competitive this season I feel, especially with NYCFC and Orlando entering MLS. Toronto will make it interesting with their off season moves. The Revs have mostly the same squad from last season, plus Juan Agudelo, and should be competitive all season as well.

 

2. Who will lead the team in goals?

Justin: I think this is Juan Agudelo’s year to shine. He has a lot to prove and certainly needs to get back with the U.S. Men’s National Team to complete his European dreams. Staying healthy will be the key.

Sean: Juan Agudelo. If he can return to his 2013 form, he should have every opportunity to lead the team in scoring in 2015. As impressive as Lee Nguyen’s 2014 goal total was, it’s hard to see the midfielder replicating (or needing to replicate) that number this season with the team’s added offensive weapons.

Brian: I really, really want to say Juan Agudelo, but my gut says it’ll be Diego Fagundez. The last time Agudelo and Fagundez were teammates, the latter went on to score a team-high 13. I think Fagundez will find similar success this season, with a goal output of around 10-14 goals.

Jose: No doubt, in my opinion: Juan Agudelo will lead the team in goals this season. I believe Jay Heaps will switch his lineup at first, but at some point Agudelo will get the majority of starts.

 

3. Who will be team MVP?

Justin: This season, it’s going to be Jermaine Jones. With a full season ahead of him, Jones will have a better chance to showcase what impact he has on New England.

Sean: Jermaine Jones. With a full season, this year Jones’ impact should be enough to earn him the team’s MVP.

Brian: If last season’s events were any indication, it’ll definitely be Jermaine Jones. The team went 9-1-1 with him down the stretch, but more importantly, continued that form during the postseason. It’s hard to envision the Revolution as a Cup contender without Jones in the fold.

Jose: Team MVP will be Jermaine Jones. Many were surprised with the offense he brought with him last season, but with the lack of goals from anyone else, Lee Nguyen stole the show. With a goal scoring presence in Agudelo, Nguyen wont score as much, and Jones’ contributions will prove that he’s the real MVP.

 

4. A modest proposal. If you could make one change to the way the team is organized, what would you do?

Justin: If I could change one thing, it would be to use Charlie Davies and Agudelo at the same time. Sure the season hasn’t started yet, but Heaps has always been hesitant to use two strikers.

Sean: Defensively, there are a lot of question marks surrounding the center back partnership of Andrew Farrell and Jose Goncalves. The two didn’t seem to complement each other well in preseason. I’d find another center back option bettered suited to pair with Goncalves and allow Andrew Farrell to continue to develop as a right back where he has the physical tools to become one of the league’s best.

Brian: I would slot Darrius Barnes – instead of Andrew Farrell – alongside Jose Goncalves. Barnes entered the league as a center back in 2009, and performed admirably in that role despite the general lack of talent around him at the time. He’s good in the air, and is rarely caught too far up the field.

Jose: One change I would make is to put Diego Fagudez in Teal Bunbury’s spot. Nothing against Bunbury, but in the system Heaps plays (to me, its 4-3-3) I like to have the lone striker flanked with two speedy wingers who can run at the defenders with the ball.

 

5. What would define success for the 2015 Revolution?

Justin: Either the U.S. Open Cup championship or MLS Cup championship.

Sean: After last season and adding Juan Agudelo, nothing less than a MLS Cup will be a true success in 2015. Yes, the expectations are that high

Brian: A league title, and nothing less. If improvement is the name of the game every year, then the only way to perform better than last year is to win it all, pure and simple.

Jose: To me only one thing defines success. Bring home the cup! This is mostly the same squad from last season, and they should be competitive. A smaller achievement for the team is to see Andrew Farrell have a good season at center back.

One Comment

  1. John

    March 8, 2015 at 9:07 am

    Yes, the Cup would ultimately define success, but I would also accept the Supporter’s Shield. We’ve never won that either, and that would mark some improvement despite another Cup loss.

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